80/35 2016 is right around the corner, and project manager Amedeo Rossi says there's a lot of elements to the festival that attendees will remember from previous years - free water bottle filling stations courtesy of Des Moines Water Works, for one. What's different from past years? The festival is not over the 4th of July weekend.
"Having it the next weekend made it a little bit easier to book," says Rossi. "It was one of the reasons to switch it off of the 4th of July weekend."
80/35 has traditionally been held over the 4th of July in Western Gateway Park. This will be the festival's second year with a new date. Headliners include Nas and the Decemberists. In 2015, the festival saw record attendance with the new date.
Some musically minded Iowans were surprised to hear Nas as a headliner when acts were first announced. Rossi says that it's been pretty standard for 80/35 to have hip-hop acts and says it's really been about every other year that the festival has featured a headliner who is a hip-hop artist primarily.
"The very first year, we had the Roots and the Flaming Lips," he says. "It was strategic because we were up against Lazerfest."
Iowa Public Radio will be hosting a stage again this year at 80/35 (come visit us!), and in preview of the festival Rossi talked with Studio One's Tony Dehner.